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December 14, 2005

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pollyusa

I am still thinking Woodward's source could be Hadley.

Waas puts Hadley in play here, but stops short of linking Hadley to Plame. He says Hadley was involved to discredit Wilson.

It was then that senior administration officials began their campaign to discredit Wilson as a means of countering his criticisms of them.

Rove and Libby, and to a lesser extent then deputy National Security Council (NSC) adviser Stephen J. Hadley (who is currently Bush's NSC adviser), directed these efforts.
Waas 8/13/05

RawStory posted two articles on Hadley/Woodward. I'm not sure how well RawStory will hold up, but FWIW on Hadley they posted a follow up to the original claim about Woodward to say their sources were standing by their story. They also claim to have sources in two places, "attorneys close to the investigation and intelligence officials", they add that their sources have " direct knowledge of the case" in the follow-up article.

The Times (UK) also claims that Hadley is Woodward's source.

THE mysterious source who gave America’s foremost journalist, Bob Woodward, a tip-off about the CIA agent at the centre of one of Washington’s biggest political storms was Stephen Hadley, the White House national security adviser, according to lawyers close to the investigation.
The Times 11/20/05

Maybe one day we will find out, maybe not.

kim

Maybe when Hadley's gone senile and can't contest the story, but isn't dead, after which Woodward's story couldn't be contested.
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Jim E.

There's also this account of Novak's talk:
http://www.newsobserver.com/102/story/377675.html

Says Novak: "I'm confident the president knows who the source is. I'd be amazed if he doesn't. . . . So I say, 'Don't bug me. Don't bug Bob Woodward. Bug the president as to whether he should reveal who the source is.'" [Does he mean "question" or "electronic survelliance" when he uses the word "bug"?]

For Novak to blame "extremely bad management of the issue by the White House" also seems to push the source away from Armitage. (Although, to be fair, Novak was talking about how the SP got involved, not necessarily his source with that quote.)

And if Novak does share the same source, it undercuts Woodward's point that it was all gossip and not really a leak. Novak's made clear that the information was handed to him. "Official A," according to the indictment, knew exactly what Novak was going to publish ahead of time.

emptywheel

Tom, two things pointing to Hadley here (I've got a long Armitatge post in the works that will explain why not Armitage) is that in the same interview (I think it's the same interview) Novak says Bush definitely knows who this source is. THat's a lot more likely if it's Hadley than if it's Armitage.

Also, keep in mind Mr. X showed up three times: leaking to Woodward, leaking to Novak, and leaking to Pincus. NOt clear that Pincus' leak is the same person. But if he is, then Mr. X is almost certainly NOT Armitage, because Pincus was clear that Mr. X was trying to get Pincus to stop writing articles on Wilson's trip. Armitage would have no motivation to do so; Hadley clearly would.

Jim E.

"(I've got a long Armitatge post in the works that will explain why not Armitage)"

Will you explain why he's never issued a denial?

Cheez Wiz

"Bug the president as to whether he should reveal who the source is."-Bob Novak.

Ha Ha Ha. For all you jackasses braying about how "ridiculous" this investigation is-it's true now, and it's the same as it ever was, Bush could just order everything revealed.

Obviously the slow pace of this investigation better suits the White House's interests.

kim

CW: Just who do you think he can order around? And you really are a little gone on the omnipotent and omniscient Bush to think that he can order everything revealed.

Oh, you mean only the White House side of the story. Don't you think that's what the testimony has been about?
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Jim E.

"And you really are a little gone on the omnipotent and omniscient Bush to think that he can order everything revealed."

Er, it's Bob Novak who is convinced that Bush knows who the Novak leaker is. If that's the case, Bush wouldn't have to "order" anything -- he could tell the world himself.

Jim E.

Then again, what the heck's stopping Bob Novak?

Cheez-Wiz

Nothing Jim E. but we all know Novak is a scumbag. A fortiori...

TP

I know Hadley's denial was weak, but, as JimE says, there has been none from Armitage. In addition, if, as Novak says, Bush knows, I can't believe he was stupid enough to let Hadley make a weak denial and keep his job (much less give him a promotion while he was under a cloud). But, given the hands we are all dealt genetically, one can never underestimate the Bush family's ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Perhaps this was another of Andy Card's ideas.

pollyusa

That Bush told Woodward, maybe. That was my first thought when I heard about Woodward, but the denial from Bush stopped me in my tracks.

That Bush told Novak, I'm tempted to say no way but never say never. Let's just say I find that notion extremely unlikely.

kim

You guys still think there was a leak?
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kim

Herbert Lom, a scumbag? I'll let you outa here.
================================================

Pollyusa

From what I've read and heard about Armitatge. he could care less about issuing a denial. Why should he, if he's not the leaker. He is probably enjoying watching the speculation.

Kim

BTW been meaning to say.. hilarious comments all over these threads.

kim

I don't see why we shouldn't drag Beers back into it. He and Clarke and Berger. Somebody had to remodel, then jump-start Joe and point him in the direction of a soapbox.

Surely Fitz will ask him about conversations around the time of his sudden offensive.
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Bob in Pacifica

Arguing Hadley versus Armitage is a little myopic when looking at the big picture. Bush (or his caretaker) fills out the line-up card. He's supposed to be the President. I know Bush has been accused of being incurious, but it sounds pretty clear to me that he has no interest in getting to the bottom of this, something he could do with a snap of his fingers. Why would that be?

Why didn't Bush do a quick admission of it before it became a prosecutable matter, very early in the game? (Okay, it was a prosecutable matter from the act, but one which could have been pretty much limited to some minor pleading by someone expendable.) Why didn't a Bush Boy do a quick mea culpa? Because it would have exposed the Hadley/Martino cut-and-paste operation to close examination and would have immediately exposed how fraudulent this war was. Couldn't have that.

In fact, the reason why Hadley hasn't been officially thrown under the bus already is precisely because he is so close to the source of this river of shit.

Look, Bush was behind smearing Wilson to cover up the bogus Niger op, and his minions got caught. He can't plead Alzheimer's like Reagan, but Incuriousness would be a novel defense, and one that MSM would cluck along with. After all, they all seem to suffer from the same disease.

kim

Bob, is there still a leak in Pacifica?
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kim

Thanks pu, I'm grateful that others share my amusement. I've heard it explained that depression is when you are no longer amused by the ironies of life.
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TM

If it is Hadley, then he leaked to Woodward, was the first leak to Novak, sat on Rove's email about Cooper - why has he not been healdined like crazy as Mr. Big?

Of course, if Fitzgerald knows Hadley was Novak's source, his ongoing interest in the Cooper email makes more sense. And the Woodward revelation hurts Rove (since Hadley looks more like a mastermind).

But what zany promoted Hadley with all this baggage?

Gary Maxwell

Polly

Raw Story is "standing by their story"?

How quaint a notion. Of course Mary Mapes is standing by her story too.

kim

Do you mean Mr. Able Danger Big?
=================================

kim

Figaro, Figaro, Figaro.
========================

Pollyusa


Gary

I did qualify the Rawstory claims I'm not sure how well RawStory will hold up, but FWIW..

TM

I don't think we know if Hadley sat on the email. I floated the idea last week that Fitz may have had the email early in the investigation. If Fitz had the email, I think it more likely that investigators found it but maybe Hadley turned it over.

I think Hadley likes to keep his head down and there aren't any leaks like the contents of the Cooper email around that directly implicate him.

Jim E.

TM wrote: "why has he [Hadley] not been healdined like crazy as Mr. Big?"

Well, Rawstory *has* headlined Hadley repeatedly. But I don't think that's the type of place you were referring to.

Most of the GJ-related leaks in much of this have come from Rove's lawyer. There are a ton of other players in this -- significant and not so significant -- that have managed to keep their pie holes shut and have prevented the airing of various storylines. As Rumsfeld might say, we don't even know what we don't know about this case.

We do know that Woodward's and Pincus's source has allowed those reporters to testify in front of the GJ, but has specifically NOT allowed them to reveal his identity. Maybe Robert Novak has the same agreement with his source, which is maybe the same source as Woodward and Pincus. If so, it would help explain the lack of solid and reputable Hadley-related leads. Maybe Hadley's been cooperating this whole time, and maybe he's given reporters strict confidentiality releases.

"But what zany promoted Hadley with all this baggage?"

The same zanies that gave a medal to a guy they blame for giving them incorrect intelligence.

emptywheel

TM

Why promote Hadley? You might as well ask why promote (Mr. 11 hour delay) Gonzales or why promote (Deputy Chief of Staff) Rove or why promote Bolton or Mr. rumored to be the leak of Plame's covert status) Hannah. Or you might look back to Watergate, where the people involved in the coverup all got promotions. Meanwhile, look at the people who didn't come back for a second term. Mr. (recusal screws up the coverup) Ashcroft, Mr. (cooperating with the Prosecutor) Powell and all his allies (although Condi did ask Armitage to say, he told her to fuck off, so maybe you're right and Armitage is involved).

JimE

Short version on no denial. Richard Armitage is accused of all manner of crap every day by the Neocons. If he denied everything they floated, he'd need a full-time press secretary just to respond to Neocon accusations.

But you also might consider that Laura Rozen's best source (and remember she is friends with Murray Waas, who is the best source period on this) told her Woodward's source had lied and issued a denial.

kim

Jim E, the medal to Tenet was like a watch to a retiree, or a 'trinket' to a gray lady icon. Not the same zany as giving Hadley Rice's old job.

And I'd have more respect for the point of view expressed by the squeaking wheel if the same analysis didn't also apply to loyalty to team members and had nothing to do with a cover-up. Cover-up of what? Joe's lies?
=======================================
==============================================

maryrose

Kim your comments always, delightful and insightful,
Bob, Your getting into the weeds here with your fantastic theories about President Bush.
I also agree with Berger and Wilson involvement because both were booted from the Kerry campaign. And we all know how much respect Sandy Berger has for classified documents and information.

topsecretk9

Short version on no denial. Richard Armitage is accused of all manner of crap every day by the Neocons. If he denied everything they floated, he'd need a full-time press secretary just to respond to Neocon accusations.

Gee, I'm persuaded.

BTW, Novak floating that Bush is protecting the Bobbsi Twins source tells me it is not someone the left will be happy about (i.e. not a prize)

Jim E.

"Not the same zany as giving Hadley Rice's old job."

Giving people plum rewards for staying loyal to the team is not unheard of.

Jim E.

TS9,
Then why is Novak also "protecting" the same source?

Jeff

TM - You are full of good questions today, especially the one about the zany who promoted Hadley.

And, if Armitage is the source for both, why are we not hearing about a vexation at the Special Counsel's office - surely Armitage's little memory lapse obstructed the investigation?

Whoever Novak and Woodward's source(s) is/are the same, we're not hearing about vexation out of the special prosecutor's office for the same reason we're hearing virtually nothing out of the special prosecutor's office -- Fitzgerald is conducting a dignified investigation with the integrity and lawfulness that Ken Starr has made us fail to expect from such investigations. I feel very confident that Woodward's source is going to be indicted -- much more confident than that Rove is.

As for who the reporters' sources are, I still find it hard to believe that it's Armitage if Novak and Woodward have the same source, though so many players in this have acted so unimaginably stupidly that I can't be sure. And it certainly has looked like things are pointing to Armitage, though emptywheel's note about Rozen carries some weight, and my instinct (mixed with the usual wishful thinking) has tended toward Hadley. I do think that Novak's comment about being amazed if the President didn't know who the source was seems to point to someone very very close to the President, closer than Armitage. And putting aside Rawstory -- whose Rove story yesterday is totally lame -- Hadley has been pointed to as the great unsung antihero of the twin attacks on the Wilsons and the CIA by a number of us following this closely as well as by press reports in the WaPo and Waas. He's just not as high profile as Rove, so that's where the focus of the (especially TV) media has been. I've long thought that Hadley and Libby were the main actors in those twin attacks in June-July 2003, with Rove playing an important role as a strategist but little role as an actor, since he didn't have the credibility on national security with the press that Libby and Hadley had. Which, by the way, might explain what Rove meant in the email to Hadley about not taking the bait -- he was lying to Hadley because he knew he had said too much in going into Plame with Cooper. It wasn't his job to use that against Wilson, it was Hadley's and Libby's, perhaps along with some deputies. Just a thought.

kim

Do you mean not a partisan gunslinger? Back to Powell. Also, there would be ways to conceive of Beers, and Clarke as non-partisan gunslingers. They had once been part of a Bush administration.

Cracklin' Rosie, won't be mine(wine, lyin')?
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Bikkhu

Byron York is reporting today that Libby is Woodward's source.

topsecretk9

"why has he [Hadley] not been headlined like crazy as Mr. Big?"

I believe he was headlined like crazy for not employing his full-time press secratary to respond to the lefts accusations in time when Woodwork emerged.

kim

We don't know what Rove meant by not falling into the trap.

Nor the meaning of the Aspens.
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Jeff

Thanks, Bikkhu. But this must be a mistake, no? If it's not, it's about the biggest example of burying a lead I've ever seen. From York's NRO column today, at the end:

Rove's supporters believe it would be a weak case, a good deal weaker than the perjury and obstruction case Fitzgerald has made against Libby, which itself was somewhat undermined when it turned out that there was at least one significant part of that story — Libby's conversations with the Washington Post's Bob Woodward — that Fitzgerald didn't know about at the time he indicted Libby.

"Libby's conversations with the Washington Post's Bob Woodward"? I can't believe that, especially since it's not clear how it would undermine rather than strengthen Fitzgerald's case. And the things Libby's lawyers have said would indicate they were insane if Libby was Woodward's source. So I'm not buying it.

topsecretk9

TS9,
Then why is Novak also "protecting" the same source?

I guess for the same reason Woodward is.

Bikkhu

A mistake or a slip of the tongue? Presumably-York typed up this little column after talking to some plugged in sources.

Still awaiting any retraction.

Coo Coo

Hadley has denied being the source for Woodward. Of course Hadley could be lying...but who isn't in this fiasco.

topsecretk9

Sorry Bikkhu and Jeff

Don't read that at all. Woodward talked with Libby and Libby did not out Plame (set of 20 questions!) is the message there.

Bikkhu

That makes no sense whatsoever TS9.

Polly

TM

Regarding Rove's GJ appearances, here is what I've found.

Rove's first GJ appearance in February 2004 and his fourth on Ocober 14, 2005 are well documented.

That Rove testified before the GJ on October 15, 2004 is noted in many accounts in the press. The 10/15/04 TIME article by interestingly Viveca Novak is the only one I can find that puts this appearance as his 3rd. Other accounts I have found say this was Rove's 2nd appearance. MSNBC, WaPo, AP



I am looking at the idea that Rove may have appeared before the GJ in late June or early July 2005. Note: I don't think there is any doubt that Rove testified in 10/04 that he did talk to Cooper, I am looking at the idea that Rove didn't tell the outing Plame part in 10/04.

I looked at Luskin's rolling disclosures in that period.

6/30/05 The Rove/Cooper angle broke when TIME lost it's case in the SC and agreed to release Cooper's notes and email. TIME announced this on 6/30/05.

7/1/05 O'Donnell drops the bombshell that Rove is Cooper's source on "The McLaughlin Group" on 7/1/05.

7/2/05 Newsweek confirms that Rove and Cooper talked before Novak's column on 7/2/05. Luskin is the source and is admitting that Rove talked to Cooper, but no mention of Plame yet. This article has Luskin saying that Rove testified "two or three times". Note: this article is dated 7/11/05 but was published on 7/2/05.

7/3/05 Everybody has the story and Luskin is talking to everyone. Bloomburg, WAPO, and Waas all have essentially the same story. Luskin is spinning so hard here it makes your head hurt. Luskin has still not acknowledged that Rove mentioned Plame or testified about Plame .

7/6/05 Cooper gets his waiver.

7/10/05 The first article I can find where Luskin is admitting that Rove testified about talking to Cooper is the 7/10/05 Newsweek. The Newsweek story breaks the contents of the email, that Rove told Cooper about Plame. Here Luskin states that Rove has testified 3 times to the GJ. Luskin still isn't directly admitting that Rove mentioned Plame or Wilson's wife, but Luskin is saying that Rove's testimony is consistent with the Cooper email. This is when I think there is no doubt Rove has testified about the Plame portion of his Cooper conversation.

7/11/05 The WAPO has essentially the same discloure as the 7/10 Newsweek. No surprise, Luskin is a equal opportunity leaker when he wants to be.

7/16/05 AP article where Luskin revealed the existence of the Hadley/Rove email.

7/23/05 Cooper testified on July 20th and talked about his testimony on 7/24/05 on "Meet the Press". Luskin as always just ahead of the story finally admits that Rove talked about Plame in the July 23, 2005 WAPO.

This doesn't prove that Rove testified sometime in this period. A commenter on my diary on the subject remembers a story in the LATimes on July 3 that said Rove had testified 3 times. I cannot find anyone hosting that article. If the LATimes has 3 times as of July 3, 2005, it's still possible Rove testified in late June.

A couple of other points of interest:

This is the time when then IRN memo was breaking and dominating the Plame news. It was in this period Luskin also admited that Rove had talked to Novak.

I think some, including reporters, are confusing Rove's 10/03 interview with the FBI with GJ visits.

This may be out there but I wonder if Fitz tells Luskin each time before he appears that he is or is not a target. Luskin says this on July 3rd.

Robert Luskin said, Fitzgerald assured him in October and again last week that Rove is not a target of his investigation.
July 3, 2005 WaPo

and this from the Newshour.


TOM HAMBURGER: Well, it's a bit curious. There is, Margaret, a tradition, in fact it's a requirement in the Justice Department handbook, that prosecutors notify any witness before a grand jury, called before a grand jury, if they are a target of the investigation, if they are going to be charged.
Newshour 10/6/05



Jeff

Ok, now I get it, thanks topsecret, though I think the point is slightly different from what you say. The point is not that Libby didn't out Plame in his conversations with Woodward -- that makes no difference whatsoever in itself, I'm sure Libby talked to plenty of journalists without saying anything -- the point is that Woodward knew about Plame at when he talked to Libby and could possibly have passed info to Libby, though Woodward has indicated he's confident it didn't happen. But it's possible, and Libby's defense will emphasize that point. It's just odd that York left out the crucial fact that the pivotal discovery was that Woodward had another source who told him about Plame before Libby is accused of telling journalists and so on.

Pollyusa

closing italics

Pollyusa

Jeff,

On the Libby/Woodward conversations, I read that to be Libby's conversations with Woodward after Woodward's source had told him in mid June. Woodward talked with Libby about his upcoming interview with Cheney on June 23, 2003

I also testified that I had a conversation with a third person on June 23, 2003. The person was I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, and we talked on the phone.
WaPo 11/16/05

owl

Jeff..."Fitzgerald is conducting a dignified investigation with the integrity and lawfulness that Ken Starr has made us fail to expect from such investigations."

Speechless.

boris

boris

Double close tags. The typical error is using two open tags instead of one open and one close.

Jeff

Yeah, got it, Polly, thanks.

TM

From what I've read and heard about Armitatge. he could care less about issuing a denial. Why should he,...

Good point - he is retired, who cares?

I feel very confident that Woodward's source is going to be indicted

Well, if he is also Novak's source, I would be strained to see how his failure to mention Woodward did not impede the investigation.

If it was Armitage responding as Woodward's source only, he might argue that his never-published leak to Woodward was not, in his mind, a part of an investigation into a White House leak.

As to why the source came forward *if* he had already admitted to Novak - I am stumped, other than honor above self-interest.

Jeff

If it was Armitage responding as Woodward's source only, he might argue that his never-published leak to Woodward was not, in his mind, a part of an investigation into a White House leak.

From what we've learned of Fitzgerald's MO, I strongly suspect Fitzgerald must have asked a question of Woodward's source to which the source gave a false answer in not revealing his leak to Woodward. Hence my (relative) confidence that the source, Armitage or otherwise, is going down for an obstruction-type offense, unless he's got the goods to finger someone higher up for Fitzgerald. And again, it's no surprise that we haven't heard about this from Fitzgerald's office. He takes the rules about grand jury secrecy seriously, to say nothing of following them being good investigative strategy.

As to why the source came forward *if* he had already admitted to Novak - I am stumped, other than honor above self-interest.

Honor above self-interest here? Please. The source knew it was almost certain that Fitzgerald was shortly going to learn about the conversation with Woodward from the WaPo and/or Woodward himself, and figured it was better -- even if not that much better -- for him to go to Fitzgerald first. We already know that Woodward urged the source to allow him to go public twice before during 2004-5 and the source refused, or something along those lines. The point is, Woodward had reminded the source about their conversation twice, and that did not prompt honorable conduct on the source's part.

Jeff

TM - Just an observation. That bit from the less talented of the Luskin boys about the CIA being furious at Wilson doesn't really fit with your worldview, does it? Or is the idea that what Wilson did was a breach of protocol and security which warrants fury, but the White House outing her deserves fury just not prosecution? It doesn't fit with my worldview either, in the sense that I don't think the CIA was furious with Wilson for that but gave up on the Wilsons when they appeared in Vanity Fair, but then again I don't believe what Luskin is saying at all (seemingly as with most everything I've seen from him).

Jeff

TM - Wow, this is interesting. I checked out that MTP transcript from October 5, 2003 where Dana Priest appeared that you were talking about the other day. Turns out that Novak appeared on the show as well (as did Wilson), and Novak pretty much definitively asserts that he learned Plame's name from a senior government official, not from google or Wilson's online bio or Who's Who. He says both

If she is a covert operative and the person who gave me the name knew that, which I’m not sure, I’m not sure she’s a covert operative, Tim.

Unfortunately he nevers finishes that if then, not surprisingly since the then is "that person probably committed a serious crime." But in any case, a little later Russert cites the Phelps-Royce article from July 2003 with Novak quoted saying the people deliberately gave him the name, and Novak responds

That isn’t very artfully put. What I was trying to say was that I didn’t do an investigative report in the CIA going into the bowels of the CIA, talking to agents, trying to find out. What I meant was that the senior official had given me her name. Just as I’ve told you, there’s no inconsistency between those two.

So the senior official gave him the name. It's unclear whether this senior official is the CIA guy he talked to, who has turned out to be Harlow, or one of his two senior administration officials. I think it looks like it's the latter, but it's ambiguous. In any case, it wasn't Who's Who.

TM

The source knew it was almost certain that Fitzgerald was shortly going to learn about the conversation with Woodward from the WaPo and/or Woodward himself, and figured it was better -- even if not that much better -- for him to go to Fitzgerald first.

Hmm, if the source is under WH orders to cooperate, that makes sense.

If the source is retired, why not take the Fifth? Or, why show up at all? Come and get me, copper!

TM

That bit from the less talented of the Luskin boys about the CIA being furious at Wilson doesn't really fit with your worldview, does it?

Well, I doubt the CIA was monolithic - I bet Tenet wished Wilson would STFU and quit giving him problems.

That takes us back to the notion that Novak had CIA sources for parts of this story (and his use of the word "operative" mirrored that of Andrea Mitchell on July 8 when she cited CIA sources.

Good point about Novak and the name - if we could find a skeptic who believed the "Who's Who" theoty, we could go taunt them.

TM

Thanks very much, polly - Jeralynn Merritt mentioned the other day that she is stuck on the dates of Rove's appearance as well (but that clue about the second/third time in Oct 2004 is interesting).

Seixon

A bit of speculation from me...

Regardless of who the source is, if Woodward and Novak share the same source, could this source possibly have wanted Woodward to come forward to establish that the leak was not a result of Wilson's op-ed, but in fact came several weeks earlier?

In other words, Woodward is brought in to dispel the impending doom of Fitzgerald establishing that this action was meant to punish Wilson, when it was in fact idle chatter about a boondoggle in Niger.

I have some interesting implications if it is Armitage who is the leaker...

You see, the INR had doubts about the Niger forgeries all along, and one would think that this would have made its way to Carl W. Ford, the director of the INR. If it did, then it should have gone further up the chain, such as to Armitage as Deputy Secretary of State. Why didn't this ever make its way further up the chain?

In other words, did the INR and State Department conspire to withhold their doubts on the forgeries namely so that Bush would make the allegations in the SOTU and thus embarrass the Bush administration when they later provided the documents to the IAEA?

Anyways, if Armitage is the source, that sounds very interesting to me. You now, in addition to the CPD (Plame anyone?) keeping rather quiet about the forged documents as well.

TP

I have probably missed something here, but what I don't understand about the forged documents is the apparent lack of curiosity by the CIA about their origin. It would seem to me that discovering the origin of the documents would be a high priority for the CIA. Can somebody help me with this?

clarice

Il Giornale has been covering this well and they credibly report the FBI is working with Italian intelligence on this matter. Why not the CIA? Interesting, no?

More interesting is how little except crap from the not credible Cannistraro and La Repubblica is printed here.

clarice

BTW, I have it on good authority that La Repubblica is about to be hit with a big libel suit for its coverage.

Jeff

TM says:

Good point about Novak and the name - if we could find a skeptic who believed the "Who's Who" theoty, we could go taunt them.

Much electronic ink has been spilled here over where Novak got the name, much of it in an effort to pin something, something on Joe Wilson himself via his online bio or Who's Who or EPIC or something. And here we have the categorical word from Novak himself that he got the name from a senior official (also not some female press aide who thought it the feminist thing to do to call Plame by her maiden name). So who's your first choice for taunting?

As for Woodward's source going to Fitzgerald, taking the 5th probably wouldn't do much good at this point, better to try to recant or explain or whatever.

The point about the CIA being furious at Wilson was that, according to Luskin, they saw it as an enormous breach of protocol and security to go that public with something related to his wife. And I thought your claim has been that it wasn't any such thing, and the CIA was just going after the administration for a mild infraction at best with no real damage done to the Agency or security.

Jeff

clarice - So your pal Michael is going to get all litigious, huh?

topsecretk9

Who to taunt? One could start with Matt Cooper:

"As for Wilson's wife, I told the grand jury I was certain that Rove never used her name and that, indeed, I did not learn her name until the following week, when I either saw it in Robert Novak's column or Googled her, I can't recall which."

clarice

Or my wife whispered it to me over cocktails at Primi Piatti.

TM

(also not some female press aide who thought it the feminist thing to do to call Plame by her maiden name)

Well, now, hold on - it may not have been obvious, but I always figured that that could be an aide to Armitage, or whoever. A few folks at the CIA probably knew her maiden name; anyone else would have to look it up. And lots of folks might have gotten tired of hearing about "Wilson's wife".

TM

The point about the CIA being furious at Wilson was that, according to Luskin, they saw it as an enormous breach of protocol and security to go that public with something related to his wife. And I thought your claim has been that it wasn't any such thing, and the CIA was just going after the administration for a mild infraction at best with no real damage done to the Agency or security.

Well, first of all, I doubt the whole CIA was furious with Wilson - if his wife was, she ought to have spoken up sooner.

Secondly, Tenet might easily have wished that Wilson had not gone all political on this, regardless of whether there were any national security issues relating to his wife.

Thirdly, the next time the CIA hires a consultant, there may be problems, and the next time someone says, "I'm just here asking questions for the State Dept.", they may not be believed. But that is because *Wilson* outed his own CIA role, not because of Novak and his wife.

In short, I can see plenty of reasons for CIA peevishness that have nothing to do with Novak.

In fact, Luskin's big finish was this:

Wilson had effectively already done that when he outed himself by going public with his CIA-sponsored work. And therein lies the reason why the CIA is furious at Wilson -- what he has done is an enormous breach or protocol and security.
topsecretk9

or it could stem from

Cheney behesting and "the names were wrong, the dates were wrong"

"Hey...did we tell him that?" OR "Hey...we weren't supposed to tell him that"

kim

The swallows of Yellow Cake return from the throat of Cannistraro.
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Rick Ballard

Now that's pretty unsettling imagery, Kim.

kim

They'll get an emetic in him sooner or later.
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Syl

Jeff

Okay, what I don't understand is if Woodward's source is the same as Novak's source, and Novak's source has testified, why would Woodward's source (same) be reluctant to? I mean Novak actually published something, Woodward didn't.

So to me that means either (1)the two sources are not the same or (2)Novak's source didn't testify.


Polly

I appreciate your messages. Lots of linkages and work go into them. I want to comment on this:

Luskin has still not acknowledged that Rove mentioned Plame or testified about Plame.

If, as Rove claims, he does not remember his conversation with Cooper, the email alone would not indicate what Rove actually said to Cooper. The email says nothing about Plame. Only that he didn't take the bait on the Niger thing and that he had warned Cooper not to get too far out.

So Luskin and Rove (if Rove still didn't remember) wouldn't 'know' what he said to Cooper until Cooper testified.

What I'm totally unsure about is whether Rove's memory was jogged as to his own end of the conversation (apart from what Cooper said he said) and if so, when that occurred and when he testified as to what his own words were, if he did.

Syl

Jeff

re your 1:10 PM final paragraph, reread TM's above you: Well, I doubt the CIA was monolithic

Those in the CIA furious at Wilson are not necessarily the same as those in the CIA who leaked the referral.

Oh, and i think it's perfectly plausible that Harlow gave Novak the name 'Valery Plame'. We have never heard that name spoken by Libby or Rove. Something like that is in Judy's notes, but a different part of the notebook and she claims she doesn't remember where it came from.

Syl

Jeff

also see TM at 2:02

(I can't believe I didn't read that before I hit Post. ::blush:: )

Jeff

TM - OK, if they were furious at Wilson for some reason having nothing to do with his wife, you've got a point. I didn't take Luskin to be saying that, in which case I've got a (minor) point. TM, I see how you can stick to the idea that an aide gave the name to Novak's source, who gave it to Novak. I'm skeptical, given everything else we know.

topsecret - Completely beside the point, since we're not talking about Cooper, we're talking about Novak. Could we start with you? That is, TM suggested we could taunt anyone who thought Novak might actually have gotten Plame's name from Google, or Who's Who, or Wilson's online bio -- do you still think that, or do you recognize that Novak was categorical that he got the name from a senior government official?

Jim E.

From tomorrow's Wash Post story, which deals with the Robert Novak talk: "Many involved in the case believe that Woodward and Novak had the same source. Though neither journalist has identified the source publicly, both have said the official was casually providing a tidbit of information and did not seem to be trying to generate a story to discredit Wilson's mission."

Although speculated about on blogs, the first quoted sentence is the first time I've read in a newspaper that many think Woodward's and Novak's source are one and the same. The second sentence, particularly in light of Jeff's evidence above, is just false, right? I mean, Novak's been pretty clear that he was aware he was being leaked to, and in the indictment "Official A" (Rove) was pretty clear as to what Novak was going to publish. Novak's never said it was off-hand gossip; he's clearly said that the information was given to him.

clarice

Well, you can look it up.I recall Novak saying it was not a partisan "bomb thrower" os some such, implying it was not considered some shockingly classified tidbit, but rather a simple explanation of fact.

Jeff

The trouble with trying to figure anything out from Novak is that he is just a flat out shameless liar, as his October 1, 2003 column on the Plame matter makes abundantly clear. But Novak has indeed said that information about Plame was given to him in a casual, offhand matter. And that very well may be. The trouble with that is that we have heard so many instances of this information being passed on in that manner, and so much other information about the concern about the Wilsons, that such casualness may -- in some cases, at least -- have been more calculated than genuinely casual.

clarice - You're not going to bite on the question of whether it's Ledeen who is going to sue La Repubblica? Come on. Please. I know this won't help, but Ledeen's way of thinking and acting really reminds me of the worst of hardcore Marxist habits of thought -- same form, different content. Don't you think?

clarice

Obviously, I don't share your opinion of him.And since it has nothing to do with the discussion I expect you are just trying to bait me into fighting you. No soap. Perhaps you could explain the connection between what he has ever written and "hardcore Marxist thinking". It seems to have excaped my attention.

clarice

eScaped my attention.

Rick Ballard

I really had no idea Jeff was so very, very small. He's becoming almost invisible.

Jeff

clarice - Two things. First, there's the simple factual question, no fight intended: is Ledeen about to sue La Repubblica? Second, fighting words. I saw Ledeen once, he's charming and clearly a smart guy, in a big picture kind of way. But he's like a classic former Communist turned anti-Communist. The content of his ideology is obviously different, but there's the same basic approach and habits of thought: the attachment to big systems of ideas, details and inconvenient facts be damned; the same can't-make-an-omelette-without-breaking-an-egg view of the world and the radical change that's needed; that sort of thing. However often he pays lip service to human foolishness, he's still attached to an ideology, and that's what makes him like an old-fashioned hardcore Marxist or communist; just the content is different.

Syl

Calculated Casual? LOL


Syl

Jeff

It's human foolishness that makes his ideology so necessary.

Rick Ballard

Nah, to get get to politburo wannabes you have to look at the Dems trying to airbrush the Barret Report out of existence. Now there's a solid Marxist tactic that being played in semi plain sight.

Cover up the Clinton's abuse of executive abuse of the DoJ and IRS by using the DoJ's head of public integrity division to sweep Bubba's misdeeds into the memory hole.

Now that's Marxist.

I'd think you would know the difference, Jeff.

clarice

(a) He never was a Communist to my knowledge.He did his PhD with Professor George Mosse, with whom he rmained close until George died a few years ago. But Mosse, an old style European socialist wa always more to the left than Ledeen who was a standard 60's Dem in his youth. (b) If he sounds very definitive in his views to you, it is not because there is some "ism" or ideology he's bought into, but because he has spent a lot of time studying the issues he's interested in and has in the process developed firm views(c) those views are informed by the facts he has gleaned. On Italian politics and history and what is going on in Iran there is no one more knowledgable.
He is, after all, an historian , not a journo, and he brings to the subjects he's interested in a scholar's frame of mind--that is, he is a careful researcher.

In person you would be even more impressed with his wit and good humored temperment than you might be on tv appearances which require a much more truncated presentation.

For what it's worth, he is also a great father with 3 of those most wonderful kids in the world, the eldest of whom is a Marine due to ship out to Iraq in a few months (just in case you were about to segue into neo-con chickenhawk.)

topsecretk9

Clarice
No Partisan Gunslinger

clarice

LOL..And no source, either.

topsecretk9

do you still think that

Seriously not sure I ever thought that. Also, I was just pointing out that Cooper "admits" he "googled" her

Only you seem to be the one bugged by the fact "Valerie PLAME" is listed in Who's Who... which is odd, since it doesn't pass Wilson's smell test

Novak -to me does not say here that Who's Who where he got it...he is just pointing out it was a very public "secret"

"How big a secret was it? It was well known around Washington that Wilson's wife worked for the CIA. Republican activist Clifford May wrote Monday, in National Review Online, that he had been told of her identity by a non-government source before my column appeared and that it was common knowledge. Her name, Valerie Plame, was no secret either, appearing in Wilson's "Who's Who in America" entry."

But you can taunt me...I'll start...Maybe, Rove gave Novak a copy of the church newsletter!

Jeff

Rick - I may be small but you don't get it.

clarice - Thanks. I'm willing to believe most of what you say, though on the crucial bits we're going to continue to disagree. I don't see the scholar's frame of mind, maybe just what passes for one on in the rightwing think tanks these days. And I'll go with Syl's characterization. But it's always someone else's foolishness, isn't it -- just like it's always someone else's lawsuit that's frivolous.

Jeff

topsecret - All of that is once again basically irrelevant. Novak said he got the name from a senior official. But here goes: what did the church newsletter call her? Since Wilson's wife's name is "Valerie Wilson", I'd be surprised if it called her "Valerie Plame" simply -- maybe "the former Valerie Plame"? Also, you provide another good example of Novak's lying, or incompetence. He makes it sound like May wrote that her identity was common knowledge, when in fact what he wrote was that he inferred that from what his former government source told him, allegedly. Finally, I was referring to Novak's more recent claim that he could have gotten the name from Who's Who. But I was not saying that Novak had claimed he did in fact get the name there -- he just tried to distract as many people as possible into thinking that was the idea, and distract away from the fact that he learned it from a senior government official. And it worked for some readers of this site.

clarice

Yeah--he doesn't hope to match the disinterested scholarship of such Left luminaries as, say, Doris Kearns or Arthur Schlessinger, Jr. LOL

topsecretk9

Eyes glazed over

All of that is once again basically irrelevant.

okay, because you say so. Come on Jeff...your cherry-picking the relevance...

I am a little curious why Cooper saying he could have "googled" to find her name does not bother you.

FYI I was actually just joking around about the newsletter. But..

...Wilson is the one that asserted Rove must know VPW from the newsletter, so according to your argument Wilson is as guilty of distracting people into believing such, as Novak.

I know his wife's name because we get a church newsletter. So, why he wouldn't know my wife's name, perhaps he doesn't read the newsletter.

topsecretk9

peace offering discussion

Anyone care to wonder why David Corn floats out ( or would wonder) if there is another reporter out there sitting on info

"How could Novak's role as the original conveyer of the leak be "snowballed"? But, more importantly, how might Novak know that Bush knows what he knows about his source? Answering that question might make for a worthwhile column. Do we have another reporter here sitting on important information? "

(to lazy to ahref the link)

http://www.davidcorn.com/archives/2005/12/bob_novak_says.php

clarice

Beats me. I think Novak's suggestion seems preposterous on its face. It presumes (a) Bush KNOWS who told Novak.How? and (b) He knows who told Woodward.How? and (c) he has some interest in protecting that person.

kim

And you think left wing think tanks are scholarly?
Sure, some.
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Rick Ballard

Clarice,

Novak got what he wanted - he's back in the news. Now I wonder if Tenet = 1SAO + "The CIA says". The bit with Harlow may have been a dodge to cover Tenet - which is why Novak ignored Harlow's request.

clarice

Rick, that has always been my suspicion. And since I think Armitage was Woodward's source, I think Novak's statement is particularly mysterious.

My guess is that Novak's closest sources generally were people like Scowcroft who opposed the war, not anyone in the WH ,but he also had some in the intel and defense and DoS establishment so I could be wrong about where he got it.

kim

Being Novak's source on the eve of Tenet's declaration, and being Woodward's source a month earlier have different moral values. I'd guess Woodward might go to his grave with this secret.
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clarice

Well except for Fitz and the grand jury, you mean...

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Wilson/Plame